Posts tagged puppy mills

Vancouver Sun highlights puppy issues

I’ve always enjoyed the “Puppy Love” column by Kim Pemberton in the Vancouver Sun.  Here is a great article — part of a series — about the better option to ‘adopt don’t shop’. See here.

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Suffolk County (NY) has the makings of a better law for puppies

This quote made my day!  It’s from the North Shore News in Suffolk County NY.

“It’s time Suffolk County joins a national trend and bans these businesses that support the puppy mill industry.”

I’m sure glad to hear this called a ‘national trend’.   Suffolk County legislator Jon Cooper has proposed a law to ban the retail sale of dog in pet stores.  See article here.  The proposed law will take some time for consideration, and the public is asked to participate.   Here is a web comment from that same article inviting input.   Three cheers for Suffolk Co. and Jon Cooper!

Comment from Jon Cooper (reprinted):

Thank you for posting this story about yesterday’s public hearing on my “puppy mill” bill. If any of your readers would like to testify in support of this bill at the next public hearing, they can call my district office for full details at (631) 854-4500. They can also email me at jon.cooper@suffolkcountyny.gov. The hearing will take place at the next General Meeting of the County Legislature in Hauppauge and is scheduled for 6:30 PM on Tuesday, August 2nd.

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BC Court upholds Richmond’s ban on the sale of dogs in pet stores!

Bebe and Spider at the Richmond Animal Shelter

A new day has arrived for the ongoing fight to stop the retail sale of dogs in pet stores and reduce the number of unwanted pets in Richmond, in Canada and in North America! On April 14, Justice John Savage ruled that the  City of Richmond had good reason to enact this bylaw, and that it was a justified action to take to reduce the large number of abandoned pets in the city.   See the Richmond Review article, but it’s below as well.

Also see our updated website page:  Puppy Ban Media Coverage.

Court upholds Richmond’s ban

on retail sale of dogs

By Matthew Hoekstra – Richmond Review
Published: April 15, 2011 3:00 PM
Updated: April 15, 2011 3:43 PM

A B.C. Supreme Court has dismissed a petition launched by three Richmond pet stores seeking to quash a bylaw restricting the sale of dogs in retail outlets.

In a judgement released yesterday, Justice John Savage ruled Richmond council’s decision to ban the retail sale of dogs was a reasonable move to reduce unwanted and abandoned pets.

Last fall city council approved the bylaw, which is set to take effect later this month. That raised the ire of Pet Habitat, PJ’s Pets and Pets Wonderland, which jointly launched legal action against the city.

Pets Wonderland sells approximately 150 dogs per year, netting the store $700 to $2,500 each, while PJ’s sells approximately 50 dogs annually.

In the lead-up to the approval of the bylaw, the city received plenty of written submissions, including two petitions: a 2,160-signature petition supporting the ban, another 1,174-signature petition opposing it.

The pet stores argued the bylaw wouldn’t reduce unwanted and abandoned dogs and Richmond acted in bad faith. The judge disagreed.

“In my view Richmond had a valid municipal purpose in enacting the bylaw, reducing the number of unwanted and abandoned dogs in Richmond,” wrote Savage.

Pet stores also argued the bylaw discriminated against them because breeders, kennels and others are still able to sell through the Internet. They further stated there was no clear evidence relating to the impulse buying of pets, which the city sought to stop.

“People do most things on impulse including getting married. There is no connection established that people who do things on impulse change their minds. To the contrary decisions made very quickly can be every bit as good as decisions made cautiously and deliberately,” argued the petition.

But Justice Savage ruled the bylaw would only be discriminatory if the bylaw didn’t act within the public interest.

“Here council distinguished between businesses which made it relatively easy to purchase a dog and those which made it more difficult. There was some evidence

that it was easier to purchase a dog from a pet store; it was possible to buy the dog and take it home the same day with little screening. Breeders and kennels had stricter criteria and often there was a delay between choosing a dog and taking it home.”

Savage concluded the pet stores “overstated their case.”

“The decision to prohibit the sale of dogs in pet stores falls within a range of acceptable outcomes that are defensible with regard to the facts and law. There is a rational connection between the bylaw and its objective.”

The bylaw, initiated by Coun. Ken Johnston, goes into effect April 30.

See: http://www.bclocalnews.com/richmond_southdelta/richmondreview/news/119949494.html

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Winnipeg looking to right some wrongs for pets

The City of Winnipeg, Manitoba is considering a ban on the sale of dogs in pet stores to stop the financial support of puppy-mills by local retail outlets. Check out this CTV article. (A special thanks to my friend Helen for sending me this information!)

Winnipeg has quite a few stores that sell animals, including puppies, so this law would go a long way to stopping the range of problems caused by retail sales of puppies and other animals.  Amongst many pet stores, a Petland chain store is also located in Winnipeg.  Petland is notorious for their sale of puppy-mill bred dogs (see: US Humane Society) and their connection with Hunte Corporation.  Furthermore, in 2008, the US Humane Society sued Petland and the Hunte Corporation for racketeering and misleading customers.  A quote from the lawsuit is below:

The lawsuit, filed in federal district court in Phoenix, alleges that Petland violated the federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), and numerous state consumer protection laws by misleading thousands of consumers across the country into believing that the puppies sold in Petland stores are healthy and come from high-quality breeders.  Read more…

In 2008, two former Petland franchisees sued Petland and the Hunte Corporation for their horrific business practices (see:  Animal Law Coalition).

The lawsuit, filed in federal district court in Phoenix, alleges that Petland violated the federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO), and numerous state consumer protection laws by misleading thousands of consumers across the country into believing that the puppies sold in Petland stores are healthy and come from high-quality breeders.

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Missouri’s Prop. B PASSES! Breeders limited to 50 dogs!

On the cusp of Richmond City Council ready to vote on a ban on the sale of dogs in pet stores this coming Monday, Nov. 8th, Missouri’s voters have taken matters into their own hands as well.  Tonight they passed Proposition B to implement new regulations for dog breeders in that state!  See the news.

Effective next year, the law will limit breeders to 50 dogs and outlaw wire floor cages amongst many other improvements for these facilities.

This new law in Missouri, a state with thousands of puppy-mill facilities, will make a difference all the way out to Richmond, BC.  In the last week alone, two dogs were surrendered to the Richmond Animal Shelter who had been purchased at local pet stores.  Both dogs (Spyder is shown left) could be traced back to puppy-mills in Missouri, where the Hunte Corporation, a puppy broker, buys many of its puppies for sale at auction.

THANK YOU, MISSOURI!  You made a real difference for our dogs tonight.

But the news doesn’t stop there.  The City of Langley has voted to have staff report back on options to curb puppy-mills right here in BC.  See the article on puppy laundering.

A special ‘thank you’ to Corry Anderson-Fennell of the BC SPCA and Helen Savkovic at the Richmond Animal Protection Society for contributions to this post!

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Richmond Councillors ban pet stores sales of dogs !!!

Yes, really! I can hardly believe it myself….

See:  http://www.ctvbc.ctv.ca/servlet/an/local/CTVNews/20101005/bc_puppy_ban_101004/20101005?hub=BritishColumbiaHome

We did it and you did it! Tonight, Richmond City Councillors unanimously voted to amend the business license bylaw to effectively ban the sale of dogs in Richmond pet stores! Tonight, we celebrate, because in the days and weeks ahead, a few less animals will suffer for pet stores’ profit!

There will be some additional work in the days ahead regarding implementation of the changed bylaw.  The amendment will require a 1st, 2nd and 3rd reading before council and some public consultation for implementation.

Thank you everyone for all your hard work!

Christie Lagally
Animal Welfare Advocacy Coalition

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Puppy-mill issue is in center court

The BC SPCA has seized 14 dogs from a suspected puppy-mill in Abbotsford. See article on CTV.

Marcie Moriarty, Director of Cruelty Investigations for the BC SPCA, has highlighted the need for municipalities to ban the sale of dogs in pet stores.  CTV has published Oct. 4th as the date for Richmond City Council to discuss this issue.

This comes right as we are all preparing to speak to council on Oct. 4th for the General Purposes Committee meeting, albeit the agenda item is still tentative until we hear from City Hall.

If you haven’t already sent a letter to the Mayor and Councillors regarding your support of the Ban on the Sale of Dogs in Storefronts, please email today to: mayorandcouncillors@richmond.ca.

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